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Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone

B&H # CO4038 MFR # 4038
Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone

Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone Alternate View

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The Coles 4038 studio ribbon microphone was originally developed by the BBC as a broadcast microphone. Recognized for its wide, flat frequency response and high sensitivity, the 4038 quickly became a valuable tool in the recording studio as well as broadcast applications. The pressure gradient ribbon transducer is capable of withstanding high sound pressure levels without distortion and the bi-directional (figure 8) polar pattern provides a uniform pick up response at either side of the diaphragm. The bi-directional pattern proves valuable when capturing multiple singers, musical instruments, ambiance capturing and more. The smooth, rich sonic detail of the 4038 has the made the microphone a classic among some of the recording industries most celebrated engineers.

Pressure Gradient Ribbon Transducer
High sensitivity and SPL handling are just some of the attributes associated with ribbon transducers, the 4038 is hailed for its overall sonic performance.
Flat Frequency Response
The flat and wide frequency response of 30Hz to 15kHz results in rich, transparent audio reproduction while eliminating low frequency noise.
Bi-directional Polar Pattern
The bi-directional (figure 8) polar pattern provides an even pick up response at both sides of the diaphragm.
Low Hum and Noise Floor
The tailored frequency response and hum eliminating electronics, result in an output stage that provides high audio gain levels and low noise floor.
Transducer Pressure gradient ribbon
Polar Pattern Bi-directional (figure 8)
Frequency Response 30Hz to 15kHz
Dynamic Range (Typical) Not applicable
Signal-to-Noise Ratio Distortion: Less than 1% at 125dB SPL
Maximum Input Sound Level Not specified by manufacturer
Power Requirements Not applicable
Output Impedance 300 ohm
Output Connectors 3-pin XLR
Pad No
Low Frequency Roll-Off No
Dimensions 7.75 x 3.27 x 2.40" (197 x 83 x 61mm)
Weight 2 lbs 6 oz (1.08 Kg)
Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone
  • XLR Cable
  • Soft Protective Case
  • Lined Rigid Plastic Carrying Case
  • 1 Year Warranty

    by PowerReviews
    Coles Microphones4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone

    (based on 2 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

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    Reviewed by 2 customers

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    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)


    What's the sound of a smile?

    By Howardellison

    from UK

    About Me Experienced


    • Clear Sound
    • Versatile


    • Bulky/Heavy

    Best Uses

    • Professional Recording

    Comments about Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone:

    Biased Brit I may be, but I came to love this fine mike at the BBC where it was designed in 1953.
    I'm now a voice actor, and use an NT1A capacitor to punch through music and effects, but turn happily to my Coles for narration and anything else that needs smooth, warm, natural repro 'with a smile'.
    Because I know producers are used to capacitor sheen, I use a touch of high-top EQ with the Coles although it is flat to 15k.
    It does come with a very odd fifties plug-base, so you are wise to buy the adaptor that fixes it to a modern stand, but I managed to wedge mine into a standard cradle.
    A surprise was the ribbon's ability to minimise external traffic rumble. Musician friend highly impressed by rendition of his saxophone.

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    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


    Microphone Royalty.

    By concerned citizen

    from chicago, IL

    About Me Professional Musician

    Verified Buyer


    • Rich warm tone


    • Breaks Easily

    Best Uses

    • Home Studio
    • Performances
    • Professional Recording

    Comments about Coles Microphones 4038 Studio Ribbon Microphone:

    What can I say. I've worked in radio and voiceovers for a number of years, and I've made my rounds through the U-87 type mics -- the cadillac of recording mics, you could say -- but the 4038 was, to continue the metaphor, the Bentley.

    I bought it to record some voices for an album that I'm designing to sound as if it were produced in 1960, so this was the obvious mic choice. And it exceeded my expectations.

    Two separate recording producers were, after a day of recording with this mic, actually annoyed by the sound of their own mics. This is not a bright sounding mic, so it will not deliver a pop music sound, if that's what you're after. However, I will say that it changed my life.

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